Facing Filipinos in Japan, President Rodrigo Duterte on Tuesday made a new vow: that the next generation of Filipinos will not be overseas workers.
Speaking before the Filipino community in Tokyo shortly after his arrival in Japan for a three-day official visit, Duterte reiterated his earlier promise to work hard to improve the country's economy.
"Ang pagtrabaho n'yo sa ibang bansa, hanggang diyan na lang. Next generation, [sa] Pilipinas na [magtrabaho]," he said to laud applause from those present.
Later in his speech, Duterte said, "We have to improve the economy na hindi ka na babalik dito, na kung bumalik ka rito, baka-bakasyon na lang."
In his pre-departure statement delivered at the Ninoy Aquino International Airport, Duterte said he and his Cabinet secretaries will "seek the sustainment and further enhancement of our important economic ties" with Japan.
"I look forward to meeting business leaders in Japan. I will tell them clearly that the Philippines is open for business," he said.
He also said his visit, which came days after his state visit in China and Brunei, will be "an opportunity for me to personally thank Japan for its pre-eminent and peerless role as the Philippines’ development partner."
"I shall seek the strengthening of this role through more high-impact projects that will benefit our nation," Duterte said.
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